Defiant Experimental Discovery of Change

The Biggest Little Defiant One of All...

We all have to do what we have to do. We might have to learn how to play guitar, parachute from a plane, water ski, or hunt for mushrooms. What is in my cue? What have I got to do? I’m not talking about chores. I’m suggesting that there are actions we can take that go against our instincts, but in so leaning against them we discover a new way forward. You might notice the nature to experiment seems inserted into us at birth and we begin exhibiting a tendency to push boundaries right off. Still seems to me we are prone to lose our spirit, our nerve, our conviction. One of the big traps of street theater is polishing an act until it is efficient, until you can draw a crowd, do a show, pass the hat, and get a
dependable return on the effort. After a while an act can get stuck. Finding new material always seems to set back the edge your most polished routines have over your new bits. This paralysis sets in and in the flash of a lifetime you
end your career too close to where you started. My show dog Lacey is 14 years old. She is deaf, she is gimpy, she is cute, has heart, and she is retired, she couldn’t do the act if she wanted. That is the second dog I’ve gone through
this with, and in each case the journey to a new show has been awkward, uncomfortable, painful, one step forward two steps back, and in general difficult, what we might call a giant pain in the butt. Still another colleague of mine has a fake animal act he has been doing too long. Been a real gold mine for him, and has provided a living for decades now. He’d love to do a new show, scrap out the old one, start with a clean slate. Problem is he’d have to take the old act down to the county dump and toss the thing in the garbage. Otherwise it’s just too tempting, too easy when he hits his first rough patch to get the old act out and show his audience a thing or two. Letting go is way hard, in variety show work it is almost impossible. It hurts like hell to fall into this hole.

Highway Home     The Novel

“Noel was chilled, but it was exhilarating
and the more he moved the more comfortable he was. Leslie came up for air. Noel
dove toward her and swam deep beneath the surface of the stream toward her. He
looked up, and when he saw her feet kicking he ascended right up and into her
arms. He put his arms around her and they both sank below the surface. Noel
kissed her.”

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12 years ago

I love the little “defiant” one.

I didn’t know Lacey was retired. So no dogs, cats, bears, chickens, and goldfish, (you almost got a tarantula. once). That is quite a change. I got the impression that you aren’t using fake animals… is that correct? ‘Cause if you were, that would be a change, too.